Legal support is a critical component to the ultimate success of any citizen sector organization. Currently, most citizen sector organizations work without access to quality legal assistance. This has left many Ashoka Fellows and other organizations faced with a major barrier when trying to expand and institutionalize their programs. To confront this challenge, Ashoka has created Advocates for Social Entrepreneurs (ASE) to develop the pro bono legal culture around the world to support social entrepreneurs.
The ASE network mobilizes law firms and public interest lawyers to support the hundreds of Ashoka Fellows around the globe and eventually the broader networks of social entrepreneurs by providing them access to legal professionals who can help them navigate the legal environment to enhance institution building, policy change, and support human rights through domestic and international pro bono legal assistance. To date ASE has served over 100 social entrepreneurs who have received over $5 million dollars in pro bono legal support.